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As the title should tell you (WHAT?!), this trope is about yelling (WHAT!?) a ridiculously long, loud "WHAAAAAT!?" (WHAT!?) Usually uttered when the character is confused (WHAT!?), annoyed (WHAT!?) or just plain ol' shocked (WHAT!?). May be used in the form of (WHAT!?): "You WHAT?", or when used in anime, NANNIIIII!?!?!?! (What) -- often translated as "Say what?" or "What the-" to match the two-syllable motion.
Anime & Manga
- Something of a Catch Phrase of Kawachi from Yakitate!! Japan is that he'd yell, "What'd you say?" in situations like this (The record was about 30 times in a single chapter of the manga).
- In the first anime for Mahou Sensei Negima, upon being told that Negi had just depowered himself intentionally, thus becoming The Load, one female character bellowed a loud "Naaaaniiii!!?"
- Also from the manga:
"Chamo:" Didn't I tell you? An Ermine Fairy has the happy blushy super ability to measure people's affections.
- In episode 14 of Azumanga Daioh, Nyamo's "What Did I Do Last Night?" ends with a big WHHAAAAAAAAAAT?!?!?!?
- Sanji does this in the Thriller Bark arc of One Piece once he finds out an invisible man saw Nami bathing. Then he goes Super Saiyan.
- Hogback pulls this after hearing that Luffy curbstomped Moria, though that may be anime exclusive
- Sengoku literally pulls this after hearing that the Government wants to cover up the escape of countless dangerous wanted criminals from Impel Down
- To some degree (a silent "what") this happened early on in the series a number of times when Luffy proclaimed that he will be the Pirate King someday. And more recently when Luffy said it straight to Whitebeard's face.
- When Luffy uses Haki to knock people out (initially, without even knowing it)
- In Higurashi no Naku Koro ni's Meakashi arc, Shion lets out a rather unhinged one when Detective Ooishi informs her that Satoshi has "disappeared".
- Meito Anizawa sometimes utters one of these whenever Konata bypasses something he's expecting her to buy.
- Akira's response in the anime adaptation of Monochrome Factor when Shirogane cheerfully tells them that he's not longer human.
- Bleach has Shinji and Hachi. The latter pulls a big "WHAAAATTTT?!?!" (or, in Japanese, "EEEHHHHHH?!?!"), and Shinji replies with "Don't 'WHAAAATTTT?!?!' me! You're standing there with your mouth open, looking like you're trying to catch flies!" (or, in Japanese, "Don't say 'EEEHHHHHH?!?!'! It's not cute when an old fart like you whines like that!")
- In The Secret Agreement, Iori casually mentions in the middle of having sex that his wedding is the next day. "WHAAT!?" is probably the only response Yuuichi could articulate.
- Annaka in Nichijou has her big "EEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEH?" that she does with regularity.
- Katekyo Hitman Reborn chapter 381 has Mukuro, Reborn, and Verde saying "What!?" in response to seeing what Vindice looks like without their cloaks and hats.
- In Turnabout Storm, Phoenix Wright collapses without warning right in his office, and while he's paralyzed and unable to move or see, he hears an unfamiliar voice talking to him. Once he gathers the strenght to wake up, he finds out he's not in his office anymore. Then he sees the source of that voice...
- Dragon Ball Abridged's Vegeta has this reaction to finding out that Dodoria's a woman.
Dodoria: I am a woman!
- When Jay and Silent Bob discover that they're to be played by Ben Affleck & Matt Damon in the unauthorized movie based on their lives, Jay gives a "Say WHAAAAAA?"
- Used in the Family Guy Star Wars parody, Something Something Something Dark Side, when Stewie declares that he is Chris' father.
- At the beginning of Sanjuro, when Sanjuro finds out that the guy he pegged as the villain knows about the younger samurai's secret meeting place, he utters the Japanese equivalent: "NANIIIIIII?!"
- In A Christmas Story, Ralphie's mom asks him where he learned the word "fuck". He decides it's a bad idea to truthfully say his dad, so he says his friend. Ralphie's mom calls the friend's mom and notifies her. She screams "WHAAAAAAAAAAT?" and proceeds to beat the shit out of him without even hanging up.
- In the first Underworld movie, Kraven does this when he finds out that "Selene's pet" (Michael) was bitten by a werewolf. His Big "What?" has the unfortunate side effect of waking up Viktor.
- In Ali, this is Cassius Clay Sr.'s reaction when his namesake son informs him that he'll no longer be known by his father's name.
Elijah Mohammad: (to the man previously known as Cassius Clay, and later, Cassius X) From this day forward, you shall be known as Muhammad Ali.
- In the comedy Clean Slate, the hero lost his memory of his testimony for the mob, but taped what he could remember before he forgot the rest of it. Then he found his girlfriend accidentally taped over it, and did this trope.
- Yellow Submarine: The Chief Blue Meanie after the Flying Glove misses at clobbering Old Fred:
Chief: What? What?? WHAAAAT??! The glove is losing his touch!!
- And before that, when Max says "yes":
Chief: WHAAAAT??! (lifts Max up by his ears) We Meanies only take "NO" for an answer!
- Happens in King Kong after Ann and Jack escape the jungle and the crew prepares to leave the island.
Denham: Wait -- what about Kong?
- Beauty and the Beast: 3 of them: when the Beast learns Belle isn't coming to dinner (as ordered), Congsworth's reaction when the Beast releases Belle to go find her father, and the enchanted objects reaction when Cogsworth tells them.
- Aladdin: Jafar uses this after Iago suggests he marry Princess Jasmine.
- That reaction probably has more to do with the way in which he initially worded it, though:
Iago: Oh! Wait a minute! Wait a minute! Jafar? What if YOU were the chump husband?
- This little gem from Animorphs: The team is on their way to plant a nuclear explosive so as to open a space-time rift to get out of the Cretaceous (It Makes Sense in Context). Ax, the local genius alien, is in charge of placing it.
Ax: Prince Jake, you do realize I have no idea as to where to place the explosive or when to set it off?
- There's one of these in basically every one of the "Froggy" children's book series.
Mom or Dad:Froggy!
Live Action TV
- In the famous Monty Python sketch about a horribly translated and sexually-charged English-to-Hungarian book, the responding constable to the Hungarian's "you have beautiful thighs" is to look at his own thighs and scream WHAT?
- An episode of Babylon 5 had this when Londo and Lennier are involved in a brawl in the Zocalo. Sheridan hears about the fight and goes to his office. As the door closes, he hears who took ultimate responsibility for the fight (Lennier, to help Londo save face). Considering that Lennier is a Warrior Poet, his reaction is understandable.
- Battlestar Galactica's Cavil says this, once he realizes that his disagreement with the Sixes has escalated into a full-blown Enemy Civil War. "Say WHAT?"
- Doctor Who: The Tenth Doctor has several times used the phrase "What. What? WHAT?!"—starting from a Flat What and working his way up to a Big What.
- And the other way around. See Voyage of the Damned.
- From The Five Doctors:
- Both forms are running gags on Titus; the big what is often used by Christopher as a reaction to the crazy thought patterns of those around him.
- Dana Carvey as the title character in the SNL skit "Lyle, The Effeminate Heterosexual" would say this whenever anyone would accuse him of being gay.
- Fawlty Towers: The "Gourmet Night" episode featured a truly magnificent "WHAT??!!"
- One Kids In The Hall sketch featured a husband (Scott) who could apparently only say "What?"; as his wife (Bruce) kept looking at him without an answer while dusting, the husband quickly invoked this trope.
- In True Jackson, VP the title charcter is prone to say "YOU SAY WHAT NOW?!"
- The "Say What?" Mad Libs Catchphrase of Hannah Montana. It was always said very specifically, "[General Description] say whaat?"
- An episode of The Golden Girls uses a different word, but has the same effect. The ladies are listening to a woman give a eulogy at a funeral. The woman's mentioning all the wonderful things the deceased has done (which shocks them, because they all knew the woman as a total witch.) Then they realize she went into the wrong funeral: Bea Arthur's delivery is what made it a CrowningMomentOfFunny (at 1:15).
Woman: Yes. Celia Rubenstein loved all mankind. She was--
- On Boy Meets World, Eric lets out an epically huge "what" after he learns that Mr. Feeny is retiring.
- The B-52s' "Love Shack". "You're what?" "Tin roof, rusted!"
- This trope has been associated with rapper Lil Jon (along with the Big Yes), even before Chappelle's Show spoofed it.
- In Peanuts, Charlie Brown kept asking, "You're what?" after Schroeder announced that he was quitting baseball.
- Stone Cold Steve Austin invoked this trope (WHAT?) as a heel in 2001, when he was acting strangely, saying "what?" during promos in order to repeat what he had just said. He first did this in real life, when he was leaving a bored answerphone message (see this video on its origins). Later he used it as an intimidation tactic, it caught on with the fans (WHAT?) and quickly became so popular (WHAT?) that they chanted "WHAT?" during the National Anthem (WHAT?) and made Austin a face in the process (WHAT?). It quickly became an Overly Long Gag (WHAT?) and would be used on other wrestlers (WHAT?), particularly Kurt Angle. (WHAT?)
- As did Hulk Hogan:
- As did Roddy Piper, who reacted as if the audience was asking him a question, every time.
Roddy: [WHAT?] Keep up with me, people. [WHAT?] I'm not doing all that again. [WHAT?] Can you not hear me out there?
- More recently, The Miz:
The Miz: [WHAT?] YOU ALL SOUND LIKE A BUNCH OF DUCKS! WHATWHATWHATWHAT! SHUT UP WHILE I'M TALKING!
- And when teaming with R-Truth, he gave us this gem.
R-Truth: Air Boom is as bad as a sneaky fart.
- And Vince McMahon:
Vince McMahon: And next week, in spite of your insidious and stupid "What?"s-- [WHAT?] Thank you. And, if you're an imbecile and you're from Hartford, you'll say-- [WHAT?] That's my point.
- CM Punk tried to do this when Vince McMahon apologized to him. However even after several invites the crowd didn't bite.
- On I'm Sorry I Haven't a Clue, one of the rounds revolves around the panellists singing along to a record. The volume of the record is then turned down so that the panellist is singing solo. Points are awarded (allegedly) depending on how close the panellist is to the song when the record is turned back on, and whenever Barry Cryer gets the rhythm wrong (quite often), he tends to give a loud and shocked "What!?"
- In Show Within a Show of The Drowsy Chaperone, this is Funny Foreigner Aldolfo's reaction to the slightest inconvenience or unexpected answer. It appears to be a trademark of his fictional actor, the Large Ham Roman Bartelli, as he is heard to do the same in the massively racist other show, Message From a Nightingale.
- This is a Running Gag in Urinetown, used possibly to greatest affect in this reveal...
Ms. Pennywise: Hope is my daughter!
- Courtesy of Lord Wakamoto, M. Bison's Japanese Death Cry Echo in Street Fighter IV is the What to end all Whats.
- In Paper Mario: The Thousand Year Door, this is Professor Frankly's catchphrase. Usually given after the events of the last chapter were explained to him so he can act as Mr. Exposition for the next. It's delivered from outside his house in the form of a speech bubble that fills half the screen.
- In Ace Attorney series, when the trials gets high-paced someone shouts it every couple of seconds.
- Almaz from Disgaea 3: Absence of Justice uses it multiple times, the biggest (And most hilarious) one being in the ending you get if he solos the last boss, where he's forced to become the overlord instead of Mao.
- Used gratuitously in Dragon Ball Z: Burst Limit, 'WHAT!?' is the response from almost every character in the game, to almost every event that occurs in the game
- Resident Evil (the first game, to be exact, courtesy of Barry Burton):
WHAT!?! What is this?
- Sam and Max Freelance Police: Sam does this in episode 205: "What's New, Beelzebub?" when they discover that Brady Culture likes Hell, but prefaces it with "Forgive me, my mouth is too parched for a Spit Take".
- The last screen you see in Star Fox 64's ending is the team's bill to General Pepper for their services; do sufficiently well (i.e. score enough kills) and the sight of this prompts General Pepper to say "Wha?" in a tone of utter shock.
- The Reveal right before the Final Boss of I Wanna Be the Guy. It really has to be heard for the full effect:
The Guy: "No. Not The Guy!... THE FATHER!"
- Revolver Ocelot utters a hilarious, surprised and hamatic "WHAAAAAAT?!" when Cyborg Ninja cuts off his hand in Metal Gear Solid: Twin Snakes.
- BlazBlue: Ragna the Bloodedge drops these a LOT in gag endings, with the English voice-actor's delivery being especially priceless. Case in point:
Litchi: I love Ragna the Bloodedge!
- "An early preview" of Portal 2 used a placeholder voice actor (one of the programmers) for new sidekick character Wheatley, who added a particularly amusing emphasis on the phrase "You did WHAT?!"
- In Kingdom Hearts II, this is how Sora, Donald, and Goofy react to two major revelations, both one after the other: first when they learn that Ansem, the Big Bad of the first game, was in fact the Heartless of a man posing as an entirely different character named Ansem; and again when they learn that the fake Ansem's Nobody is the current Big Bad.
- They do it again (this time with backing from Riku, Mickey, and even Yen Sid) in Kingdom Hearts 3D in response to Lea nonchalantly summoning a Keyblade at the end of the game. Suffice to say, the collective fandom was pretty much doing the same.
- Nanakase Yashiro's Death Cry Echo is an over-the-top "NANI?!"
- Preceding the above Bison example, K' belts out a "Nandato!" as his K.O. cry in The King of Fighters XI.
- Castlevania: Symphony of the Night features Alucard, who does this in gameplay a lot, when he's turned to stone, or untransforms in a tight passageway. For Dracula in the prologue, it's more like "big WHAT IS A MAN?!"
- In Dawn of War 2: Retribution, it's one of the responses of Noise Marines to you clicking on them. Justified because they likely have trouble hearing you given that the majority of their weaponry is based entirely on the loudest, most discordant sounds that can possibly be produced by 40th millennium technology.
- Snippy's Catch Phrase BWAH?? could count as one.
- Apparently Bruno the Bandit used to do this so often that the author started to put "too surprised to yell the obligatory what" at the end of the strips when they didn't for a while.
- The Order of the Stick, from Eugene.
Roy: Wait, what? What about the Blood Oath of Vengeance?
- El Goonish Shive provides a double example here. And an even bigger one here.
- The Inexplicable Adventures of Bob: Jean has a very big one here.
- Happens to The Nostalgia Critic when reviewing the Mind Screw that is Adventures of Sonic the Hedgehog.
Nostalgia Critic: WHAAAAAAAAA? How can you blow into your hand and make a woman!? Why would you even be chasing hedgehogs if you can blow into your hand and make a woman!?
- "What!? Pumpkin? P-Pumpkin? What? What? What? Pumpkin, What!?"
- Likewise, he uses this several times during his review of Sidekicks, the biggest being when Chuck Norris fights alongisde the main protagonist.
- And again in his review of North, when he gets furious about the film's All Just a Dream ending.
- And once again in his Patch Adams review, when Adams shapes the hospital doors like a vagina.
- ProtonJonSA's reaction to the infamous Kaizo Trap in Kaizo Mario World Special World 2. That is all.
- Kotomaru uses this several times in the second episode of Girlchan in Paradise.
- "WHAAAAAAAAAAAAAT IS THIS PLACE??"
- "Jack." "What is it, YUSEI!?" "I came... (chuckle)" "WHAAAAAAAAAA--" (Cuts to crappy animated intro set to the Metalocalypse Theme Song)
- "Jack." (no response) "I came again." "WHAAAAAAAA--" (explosion)
- Hey, Sticklyman! WHAAAAAAAAT are you doing?
- According to the 100th email, Homestar beat Strong Bad in their first competition to see who gets an egg. But:
Prince of Town: And the Duckie-man is the winner! Loser gets the egg!
- Also happens in Teen Girl Squad Issue 12, themed to Valentine's Day:
Cheerleader: Valentimes is serious times!
Donut: You guys seemed like you knew each other.I thought you were just catching up.
- In the "Tetris Smackdown" video done by the Freelance Astronauts. Maxwell and pipes! are playing, and pipes! fires off four in a row when Maxwell drops a train on him:
Ferr: More lines than a Kevin Smith movie, son!
- This Let's Play of Super Mario Bros 3. The LPer delivers one in World 8 after Yet Another Stupid Death when something unusual happens with Mario's death animation...
BohepansTheThird: ...WHAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAT? Did you just see Mario go way high in the air? How the fuck did that happen?
- Done a few times in The Strangerhood.
- The page quote comes from episode ten of Chuggaaconroy's Pikmin let's play, where he thought he left behind 98 blue pikmin due a glitch not making them show up at sundown, massive freakout ensues.
- Shiny Objects Videos: Nathan gets one in "Fishsticks".
- In an episode of Gargoyles, Lexington is trying to figure out where the sword Excalibur is hidden. The clan is in Manhattan, and Lex suddenly figures out "Brooklyn!". His clanmate with the exact same name, blurts out an annoyed, "WHAAAAT?!"
- In SpongeBob SquarePants, Plankton, disguised as Mr. Krabs, does this when attempting to get the Krabby Patty secret formula. He has to go through a tedious ritual, but Spongebob tells him that it's against the rules to tell anyone the formula. Bizarrely enough, this also doubles as a Flat What; Plankton's disguise is that of a robot with a very monotonous voice.
- In South Park, Kyle's mom, when outraged, uses the catch phrase "What What WHAAAAT?"
- And Ms. Crabtree, the cranky bus driver, will scream "WHAT DID YOU SAY?!" when one of the boys makes fun of her.
- Subverted in The Simpsons, when Bart wants to divorce his parents. Upon hearing what Bart wants, the Blue Haired Lawyer exclaims, "You whaaaaaa?" when in fact he was calling for his secretary, Uwa.
- Also subverted in this scene, where Marge has just accepted a job with the police. Cut to the exterior of the Simpsons' house:
Homer: You did WHAAAT?
- Frequently played straight with Moe, who says it in a way similar to Chris of Family Guy.
- In ReBoot, Al of Al's Diner is never seen onscreen, and is heard only when other people talk to him. The only thing he ever responds with is "WHAT?"
- In Family Guy this seems to be Chris's catch phrase: "UH-WHAAAAAAAAAAAAAA!?"
- Also, Meg in the episode "Dial Meg for Murder", when Joe arrests her fugitive boyfriend:
Meg: If you take him to jail, you have to take me too!
- Stewie's response to the announcement of a new baby brother in "Emission Impossible":
Stewie: A new baby? How wonderful. Call me when Kojak starts. (beat) WHAT?!?!
- "Why, if we were all wiener dogs, our problems would be solved!" [PAUSE] "WHAAAAAAT????"
- Two Pepe Le Pew Warner Brothers cartoons, 'Past Perfumance' and 'Who Scent You?', has this trope in the form of "Le What?!".
- A funny example of this exists in an episode of The Dreamstone. One episode features the series main villain, Zordrak going to renew his evil powers, but on his way back to his lair, an incident occurs which results in him becoming good. Needless to say whilst he is in this good state and Urpgor tells him they have stolen the Dreamstone, Zordrak makes him return it 'with flowers and an apology'. A little later, a piece of rock falls on his head, and returns him to his normal state of mind. At the same time, Urpgor tells him that he returned the Dreamstone to the heroes. Which results in:
- Another version occurs in the episode "Blob's Incredible Plan", when Zordrak finds out that Blob, Frizz and Nug stole Urpgor's Mole-Mobile:
Zordrak: They did WWWWWWWWWHHHHHHHAAAAAAAAAATTTTTTTTT????????!!!!!!!!
- Played with in the third episode of Clone High. Donald Faison's character, a clone of George Washington Carver, is in a cop movie called Black & Tan with a clone of Gandhi, played by Michael McDonald. The script calls for Carver to recite the line "Say WHAAAT?!" This unfolds:
Carver: [flatly] Say what.
- Later in the episode, Carver converts it into "What is that you SAAAY?!"
- Twilight Sparkle from My Little Pony Friendship Is Magic has one of these near the end of Feeling Pinkie Keen, on finding out an attack by a hydra wasn't the "doozy" predicted by Pinkie Pie's "Pinkie Sense".
Twilight: Uh... but I... WHAT?! The hydra wasn't the doozy? How could it not be the doozy? What could be doozier than that?!
- In "Sisterhooves Social", Rarity, Applejack, and Apple Bloom all let out Big Whats in quick succession when Sweetie Belle disowns Rarity as her sister in favor of Applejack.
- This exchange from Adventure Time when Jake rejects the rather Volatile Flame Princess.
- Also Jake's reaction to the news that she's evil.
- From Too Young:
- Also Jake's reaction to the news that she's evil.
Princess Bubblegum: Yo, EARL!
All The Tropes Has Ruined My Life? WHAAAAAAAAAAT?!!!!!!
- ↑ He's not as much of a genius as he should be, he was paying more attention to the hot girl in front of him during class than to the teacher